Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Movie Review: The Woman in Black (2012)

I heartily recommend The Woman in Black to anyone who's in it to shriek it!

In Daniel Radcliffe's first post-Harry Potter film, creepy kids are creepy, vengeful spirits are vengeful, and ohmyLord there are scares aplenty. The Woman in Black boasts impeccable costume and set designs, which, combined with the effective "Boo!" moments and tense music, eventually distracted me from my disbelief at baby-faced Radcliffe being a father.

Radcliffe plays Arthur Kipps, a young lawyer who loses his wife during childbirth. To support himself and his little son, he travels to Creepy Mansion on a Deadly Marsh to sort through the papers there and, I don't know, make sure the ghost isn't pressing charges. The villagers who live near the Marsh of Doom want Kipps to leave, except for the helpful Daily (CiarĂ¡n Hinds). Then kids start dying, and Kipps must appease the woman in black before his son arrives to join him in the village.

I'd buy you a cocktail if I had a dollar for every time this movie made Boyfriend jump. There are tons of half-glimpsed silhouettes, shadows, and movements, and the music goes quiet until SUDDENLY A GHOSTLY FACE FILLS THE SCREEN! AAAAHHHHHH!!! It's that type of movie. Being nerds, Boyfriend and I were speculating about the Reveal ("The wife did it," or "They killed the woman and now she's an angry ghost!"), which, spoiler alert, we were totes wrong in both instances. Personally, I liked the ending, even though it made me feel like drop-kicking the Woman in Black (WiB) for being a jerk. The best vengeful spirits are sympathetic, and WiB didn't get enough screen time -- apart from being terrifying -- dedicated to giving her a compelling backstory, or at least one where she wasn't a lunatic.

Anyway, if you want to be scared silly, this movie'll do it. I say, excellent show, good man! Tea! Crumpets! Fish n' chips! Cheerio!